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Interchangeability of Tail Booms (Hueys), Any Pros and Cons

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Situation is, we have a Huey, sitting in hanger, for so many parts required. (Rather we call it a Donor helo, since many items like guages, instruments are taken away). It has logged 2300 hours, airframe life.


Now there is another helo, we detected a crack in vertical tail fin, beyond permissible repair limits. One solution is, we change the honeycomb panel. But we dont have it in Supplies, anticipate that shipping will take long time. We are thinking to replace tailboom of our hanger queen, with this cracked guy. Our cracked guy has logged, like 4500 hours plus.


So what are the pros and cons, of interchanging the tail booms (rather cannabalization) of two helos, having different airframe hours.


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So what are the pros and cons, of interchanging the tail booms (rather cannabalization) of two helos, having different airframe hours.


These type of repairs and exchanges are being done on a regular basis. It's not really a matter of pros and cons, it’s a matter of practicality and economic feasibility. Having the personnel and equipment to properly repair/overhaul a tailboom and return the aircraft to an airworthy state.


A complete inspection of the tailboom is needed to fully determine the practicality and economic feasibility of any repair/overhaul, irrespective of the time logged on each tailboom.


The same holds truth with cannibalization, a complete inspection will be required to determine feasibility, cost, parts, personal, and facilities required to return the boom and aircraft to an airworthy state.


The term 'airworthiness' is best defined by reference to Section 603© of the Federal Aviation Act of 1958 (49 U.S.C. § 1423( c )) which imposes a two-prong definition.


In order to be airworthy, an aircraft


(1) must conform to its type certificate, if and as that certificate has been modified by supplemental type certificates and by Airworthiness Directives; and


(2) must be in condition for safe operation."







Edited by iChris
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